Metro Verdicts Monthly this month provides a graph on its cover showing the median verdicts and settlements in motor vehicle accident death cases. In Maryland, the median is $457,152; Virginia’s death case median is $487,500.
Why so low? While a death case in a truck accident case is probably three times this number, many auto and motorcycle accident claims have smaller insurance policies. We have handled death cases in car and motorcycle accidents where the victim’s family walks away with $20,000 or $50,000 in a wrongful death/survival action case because the insurance is limited and the at-fault driver does not have significant assets. These settlements are included in the data which drags down the median number.
It bears repeating that sometimes the most significant battle for plaintiffs’ attorneys in wrongful death car accident claims in Maryland is not at trial but before trial when they are digging through insurance policies trying to find coverage for the death.